Spoiler tags will be used to break the Guide into many parts and are not actually used to hide story line spoilers. It's just to make it that much easier to read and to split it into sections.
So here is the FFIII Mini Guide, brought to you by yours truly.
Unlike in FFII however, it probably won't be as indepth mechanically for several reasons:
a) The stats aren't as important
b) It won't be as exploitable
c) It will be a much more balanced game
Instead, we'll still talk about weapons, armour and such like because all FF's have more useful equipment than it would first appear.
So why FFIII? Well, I actually wanted to write this for FFIII FC/NES due to it being radically different to the DS counterpart. It's one of the hardest games in the series for reasons of actually being A CHALLENGE instead of mechanics such as in FFII and in FFVIII. (Which I should note the Mechanics can also be used against the game itself to make it also very easy.)
I will perhaps one day write a 'quick guide' for FFIII DS, but I've yet to get around to still playing that version of the game.
FFIII was the second to last FF game I had finished Pre-XIII. It was one that caused me quite a bit of frustration as well. All due to some terrible mistakes done in the game (or even out of the game.) This guide will talk through with experience as well and will explain the difficulties this game has given.
The most important thing to know about this game however will be the Job system
FFIII has four 'bland characters' which can all change into certain jobs. I like to think of these jobs as different characters which are built from previous characters.
Some Jobs are pretty bad, some are overpowered and two of them are just god like. But until you actually use the job and save up the money/treasure to be able to use these Jobs, you will never actually know.
So here are a list of jobs, their uses, advantages and disadvantages:
The first job class you start with. It's useless until late game and only if you're level 90+. They can only equip early game and late game equipment.
At Level 90, their stats skyrocket, but that's not enough! If you can find the Onion Equipment, they're the best job in the game. (More so than Ninjas and Sages.) They even take very little damage from the final boss so it's pretty easy to win with this job class.
WIND JOB CLASSES
Your basic combat job. High attack power is all you need to know really about this job. Just give him two swords and destroy. Upgrade him to a Knight as soon as you get the Knight Job Class.
The other 'DPS' Job class. He also has high attack power and doesn't need as much management as the Fighter. High Vitality means he's taking less damage as well but his equipment draw is not as good as the Fighter. However due to the fact that Fighter equipment early game are quite scarce, I'd recommend putting a Monk in for being able to fully utlize a party. He can upgrade to Black Belt.
As a note: The Monk may or may not have more attack power than dual wielding Nunchucks depending on his job level. Check his attack power every so often incase you need to unequip his weapons to make him punch an opponent to death.
Red Mage is only useful once in the entire game: For the first REAL dungeon (The Cave of Seal.) He can equip Red Mage specific swords which are given so randomly that he loses his power as soon as you get out of the Cave of Seal. I'll explain more when we come to the 'Weapon and Armour' section.
After the cave of Seal, you might as well transform your Red Mage into a White Mage, since a White Mage will be FAR more valuable than the Red Mage. HOWEVER you can keep the Red Mage as he does have a nice equipment draw, but he has lower amount of spell charges.
May not have the offensive potential for a Red Mage, but will be with you throughout most of the game. (All the way to late game even.) Getting the job levels on the White Mage is more important than the Job levels on the Red Mage and will allow you to cast more spells more quickly and gain access to higher level spells more quickly.
Like in FFII, White Mages have access to Toad and Mini which are all instant death spells at LEVEL 2 WHITE MAGIC. However the accuracy of both these spells suck until you gain more job levels. (Which again, won't be until near the late game.)
White mages also have access to Golem Staffs which are amazing in which a White Mage can TWO SHOT ENEMIES if they can hit with their physical attack.
The White Mage will upgrade to Priest/Shaman.
Surprisingly bad actually but I still use one. It's more useful than a Red Mage by far however due to the fact Black Mages can gain access to higher elemental magic very early in this game. Ice3 being so useful in the mid game and for beating some of the more annoying bosses in the game.
Magic tends to be bad early game but getting those job levels mean more damage and more accuracy with spells. Plus being useful for the two early mini dungeons in the game can also pay off. Mid game he can start throwing his weight around and the fact he has access to a lot of instant death is nothing to sniff at.
The Black Mage will upgrade to Warlock which is VERY useful.
FIRE JOB CLASSES
An upgrade to the Fighter. He hits harder, tanks harder and can even cover and protect. His drawback is however he will start having less equipment draw in the mid game and for the first part of the mid game will be weak. However once you have access to the Nautilus and able to dive underwater, you can find the Defender Sword and get another one really quickly.
A Knight can equip some of the best equipment from the game, including the two best 'Legendary Weapons.'
I've only used this class once. Give him any bow (I gave him the best one I could find) and find those Medusa Arrows. He's pretty exploitable in the Dark Cave (Which will have it's own section.) Other than that he's ok and has some nice damage but I prefer the damage from Black Belts, Monks and Knights.
Another class I only use once. I use it in the final Mini Dungeon, the Cave of Circle just to run away from enemies. Otherwise he can open locked doors without needing Magic Keys or steal things (But you'll never steal anything useful.) 20 or so Magic Keys will be enough to last the entire game so really he's pretty useless.
Again, only useful once in the entire game: when fighting Hyne. You can use him also for Amon, but Amon will die quicker than Hyne.
Scholar however can deal more damage using Battle Items which are generally useless after the Cave of Seal. Really though, only useful once and then stop using him.
Upgrade of Monk. A destroyer of worlds and can dish out lots of damage. Make sure to equip him with his claws. He has a much better equipment pool as well. A god mid-game, but will become useless as Late game draws near. Build Up COULD be useful in the Cave of Darkness however.
A very useful class for smiting a certain bird later. Also nice to have if you feel the Knight's power is lacking as Dragoons get slightly better equipment until you can get the Defender Sword. (I personally prefer dumping all my Job levels into Knight however. But a Dragoon can be nice.)
An interesting class. They're practically a more defensive Knight or Black Belt. They take less damage, but they deal less damage also. I prefer having as much damage as possible though. But again, an alternative to the Knight if you feel he's dropping off before you get the Defender. (Again, I prefer dumping my job levels into the Knight, but a Viking can be nice if you're struggling in battles.)
Yet another interesting class that could replace one of your characters. His equipment draw sucks but he has some nasty damaging abilities. Very useful for level grinding before you need to fight a certain bird. However randomness hurts him and he can hurt you also.
Useless. It can scare an enemy but it never really works. It has Sing and Cheer also. I dunno, if you wanted to be a sadist, play this job I guess.
Our first summoner ever in an FF game and he's useless. All summon spells have three effects and he has only access to two WHICH ARE RANDOM. The RNG hates this guy more than the Geomancer. He can upgrade however to Summoner which is far more useful. If you like a Summoner, I suppose you could dump job levels into this guy but honestly, there's no point when a White Mage or a Black Mage could do nicely.
Magic Knight/Dark Knight
I saved the best job for last for a special reason. This guy is useless when first retrieved from the Water Crystal, but later the plot will allow you to pick up all his equipment. He's better than the Black Belt in my opinion even though he has less base damage. But with the job levels dumped into the Black Belt + The Dark Swords obtained, he'll become a one man army.
He can equip the other 'two legendary equipment' the Knight can not. Though they have slightly less power, it's still more than the Black Belt will be able to pull out AND he can equip the Crystal equipment which the Black Belt cannot. In short: He's got better equipment, more power and better defence.
He can also use up to level 3 white magic including Exit!
The only reason not to have two M. Knights is due to the legendary equipment later + the best M.Knight swords and armour are very limited.
EARTH JOB CLASSES
An Upgrade to White Mage. Better in every way. More Charges, more equipment, more everything. Much more accurate in spells also, meaning that your Toad and Mini spells will start instant deathing more times than missing.
The same as Shaman, except for the Black Mage. Infact, he's a million times better than the Black Mage so use him.
Summoner is... interesting. His spells now only have one effect: The actual summon ability itself. However he has far less spells at his disposal and no instant death spells. He can do more damage than the Warlock I think but the Warlock is more useful for being able to Instant Death. However he IS a choice over the Warlock.
EUREKA JOB CLASSES
To use these job classes, you must be Base level 50. Usually, I end up being able to get access to these job classes before level 50 and so this is why I plan my Knight and M. Knight as I do: Since they'll still be able to equip the ultimate equipment.
However just because these classes outclass everything doesn't make the game that much easier. It's still an uphill battle of all things. But after so many job levels with these two classes, you'll dominate no matter what. But just having these classes alone will not garuntee making the game easier. It just helps that little bit extra.
There's no reason not to use a Ninja for physical damage. Just can crush everything and equip the four legendary weapons. Can equip anything actually except Onion Equipment. Also has the best growths in the game for Physical and frontrow fighters.
If that's not obscene enough, Ninjas can also use Shurikens, the second best weapon in the game. They even do more damage than the Legendary Weapons, but are used up after attacking with them. They also come limited and cost 65535 Gil a pop.
There's no reason not to use a Sage for magical damage. Sages just have the best mage stats in the game. They can also use all three brands of magic: Black, White and Summon. They always use the actual summon effect of summons as well. The amount of charges they get are also better than the Earth Crystal Job classes and has equal + better stats to the Shaman and Warlock.
He may equip less than the Ninja, but he probably is more broken. With enough job levels, Bahamut can do as much damage as Shurikens to an entire field of enemies. He has all the instant death spells he wants in his arsenal, all the elemental magic he wants.
Even his equipment draw is godlike: Being able to equip the Eldest Rod can boost his magic to even more insane levels.
FFIII has some pretty good equipment given to boot. Here, I'll list the equipment you'll want to get your hands on ASAP and/or not to stop equipping.
This will actually mostly benefit the Mage classes as you can find better equipment statwise for them, but can lose out on potential bonuses. In turn this is a list of 'useful equipment'
Wight/White/W. Slayer: This is actually a Red Mage exclusive sword. What it does is extra damage to Undead, which is essential to the Cave of the Seal. You find it in Sasune/Sassoon castle being guarded by a Griffin.
Defender: This sword just has obscenely high attack. However you can get it as soon as the Nautilius can go underwater (In the Underwater Cave). You want to get this sword for your Knight ASAP otherwise he's STILL stuck using an Ice Sword + King's Sword.
Yes, this means that Your Knight will go through quite a bit of the game with no upgrade to his weapon since leaving the Floating continent. You CAN get the Blood Sword, but it's not as good as it was in FFII and I swear it misses A LOT. A single Defender Sword can change the power of the Knight instantly. You can get a second one in the Ancient Cave.
Shiny Sword/Gold Sword: I've included this because it's actually a BAD WEAPON. You can get 11 of these in Goldor's Mansion. Sell them for lots of money.
Elemental Staves: Burning, Freezing, Shining, (Brought in Ancient's Village) Rune (Brought in Salonia)
Not so useful as the Elemental Rods, but can be used as items to cast magic in battle for your White Mage making her less useless. They have a low hit rate (50%) but it's better than spending your time sitting on your ass.
Burning, Freezing and Shining cast level 1/2 Elemental Magic. The Rune will cast level 2/3 Ice with 80% chance.
Ancient Sword: An amazing sword as it paralyzes enemies. It's not that strong, but a paralytic enemy CANNOT split on contact. This gives the Knight uses in the Cave of Darkness. Obtained in the Underwater Cave.
Golem Staff: +5 Attack per Staff equipped + petrifies 1/3rd of the way everytime you hit with it. Can also be used to cast Break in battle but never needed to do that. Brought in Salonia
Flame/Ice/Light Rods: They power up the Element of that Rods wielder as well as your defence against that element. Very useful, equippable on all Mage classes except White Mages and Shamans/Priests. Brought in Salonia.
Tonfa: A Monk weapon which can be found in a hidden area in Sassoon giving you that much more power that much more quickly.
Medusa Arrows: Useful in the Cave of Darkness as a way of instant killing splitting enemies. Found in certain areas such as Salonia but very limited supply (40 if I recall are in the game.)
Wind and Thunder Spears: Though seperate weapons, they're found together in Salonia in the 'Dragoons Tower'. Very useful for beating a certain Bird.
Kiku Katana: Very powerful Katana. Found by beating a boss in Fargabaad and then also given to you in the Cave of Darkness. Second most powerful Katana in the game.
Kotetsu: Not as good as the Kiku, but more common. Can be found in Fargabaad and Cave of Darkness. Really though if you're in Fargabaad, you'll gain both the Kotetsu and the Kiku meaning you don't need to find a second Kotetsu.
Full Moon: Only equippable by M. Knight and Ninja and found in Eureka. The first of the four legendary weapons you can obtain.
Masamune: Only equippable by M. Knight and Ninja and found in Eureka. The second of the four legendary weapons you can obtain.
Excalibur: Only equippable by Knight and Ninja and found in Eureka. The third of the four legendary weapons you can obtain.
Ragnarok: Only equippable by Knight and Ninja and found in Eureka. The fourth of the four legendary weapons you can obtain.
Shurikens: Can be found in a lot of places, as early as Gysahl but mostly late game. I actually sell my first Shuriken as it can give you over 30,000 Gil early game which is A LOT and will allow you to buy most things you want without grinding. Shurikens can also be brought in Eureka.
Not as useful Armour can be found but there are some.
Ice Armour: Very useful against a certain Fire Breathing Lizard. Brought in Dwarf Cave
Chakra Headgear: Gives extra bonus damage to your Black Belt. Very useful. Brought in Amur
Scholar Equipment: Useful equipment that you can buy and find early on for your mages. Found in Dwarf Cave and Argass Castle. Despite the name, it's equippable to all Mage classes.
Dragon Equipment: You can find four sets of Dragon Equipment in Salonia. Very good way of making money once you beat that certain bird. Only equippable to Dragoon.
Rusted Armour: Like the Shiny/Gold swords, this is useless. Unlike the Shiny/Gold Swords, they sell for almost nothing. Just drop or bin them.
Genji Equipment: One full set can be found in the Cave of Darkness. Equippable to M. Knight and later Ninja.
Crystal Equipment: One set can be found in the Ancient Maze, the other in the Crystal Tower. You can sets also in Eureka (But it's not really needed: You can go through with Genji/Diamond fine enough.) Equippable by most Melee job classes including Knight and M. Knight. (I give it to my Knight first since it's better equipment and the M. Knight still has Genji.)
Black Robe: The best robe for casting Black Magic and obtainable in Salonia. You need not to get another bit of armour ever again. (Even for Sages!)
White Robe: Same as Black Robe only for White Magic and also obtainable in Salonia. You need not to get another bit of armour ever again. (Even for Sages!)
Rune Ring: Most useful defensive gear for Mages until you can get the protect ring. Found in Dastaar.
Power Ring: You can give this to your Knight or your Black Belt. It's found in Amur Sewer and it's VERY useful. It gives a +5 Strength.
Protect Rings: Even more useful. 2 can be found in the Temple of Time which gives +5 Vitality. One more in the Ancient's Maze. Everyone except the Monk can equip these.
Onion Equipment: The hardest equipment to obtain in the game. These are obtained from Dragons (which have a 1/64 chance of appearing in the top levels of Crystal Tower.) The Dragons ALSO have a 1/64 chance of dropping an Onion equipment.
Ribbon: Five can be obtained. One in Eureka, the other four as the only treasures guarded by Xande clones in the World of Darkness.
Many spells in FFIII are either situational, useless or just useful. Here I'll list the spells that can be useful. Unlike in FFII where only a couple of spells are useful throughout the game, FFIII has a lot of spells which are useful depending on certain parts of the game.
Cure and all it's versions: Of course this is useful. Cure 1 - 4 will always remain useful no matter when.
Mini/Toad: You'll need these spells for specific areas. You CANNOT miss these spells either. You can buy more copies of Toad in Gyshal later. Toad/Mini is very useful as it also acts as a Instant Death spell, but only when you gain enough job levels/Become Priest/Shaman.
Square had learnt it's lesson at this point to make bosses immune to Toad/Mini so don't try it to gain easy victories like in FFII. =(
Aero: Obtainable in that one mountain area after Canaan. Get it for it's an offensive spell for your white mage which can do more damage than most the spells a Black Mage can pull of at this point.
Mute: I brought it and it's useful in perhaps one part in the entire game: To mute a group of enemies known as "Haokah." Might have other uses but I'm not sure to be honest. I like getting it though. Obtainable in Gyshal.
Exit: You'll want this for some of the longer dungeons in the game: espcially the Dark Cave. Is obtainable at the Ancient's Village
Life: Obtainable in Salonia, get ASAP. Phoenix Downs are in very limited supply in FFIII and cannot be brought.
Aero 2: Obtainable in Dorga's House.
Haste: Also obtainable in Dorga's House and is pretty much Berserk from FFII. You hit more times meaning you do far more damage. Haste is obscenely powerful on melee classes and will be the main buff you apply before healing/casting other spells.
Cure 4: Brought in Dorga's Village. You'll be needing this spell to stay alive against the Final Boss of the game. No really, you WILL be needing this spell unless you've a party of Onion Knights.
Life 2: Semi-useful spell that completely restores a dead character. Obtained in Eureka.
White Wind: Not the nice spell in later games, this is a spell that puts an enemies HP into single digits. Not very useful as Toad outright will kill those enemies with far less cost and more efficiency by the time you can even obtain this spell and use it.
Holy: Offensive magic for your Sage. Not that useful but obtainable in Eureka like Life 2 and White Wind.
Sleep: First magic you can learn and can even get it in a secret area of the Altar Cave. It's... perhaps useful.
Fire: Brought in Kazus, get ASAP.
Ice: Same as Fire.
Bolt: Brought in Canaan. Get ASAP.
Fire/Bolt/Ice 2: Can be gotten in a secret area in the Viking Base before Nept's Shrine but after Tozas.
Ice 3: Probably the most useful of the 'Tier 3' Elemental spells since it is obtained so early. It can be brought in Gysahl. Will serve you in finshing the 'Floating Continent' part of the game.
Bolt 3: Obtainable in Salonia. Will serve you when going through the Temple of Time and Underwater Cave.
Kill: I don't use this spell. But it has some crazy formula for working (Like it only works when your enemy is a 1/3rd of your level or something.) I hear it's useful for getting past the Cave of the Circle in Dorga's house, but honestly it's so situational that I don't even bother. You can get this in Salonia.
Fire 3/Bio: Get both spells in Dorga's House. Both useful. Bio is non-elemental that can do a ton of damage. Fire is ok if you know which enemies are weak to fire.
Warp: It's like Exit, only with a cooler gimmick: You can CHOOSE what floor to go back to. Neat eh? So it's VERY useful in the Cave of Darkness when obtaining the Genji Gear.
Break 2: Best Black Magic spell in the game. It's a highly accurate instant death spell which is obtainable in Dorga's Village.
Quake: I love Quake. It's also obtainable in Dorga's Village but what makes Quake so good is it hits multiple enemies at once for a massive amount. I use this when I get back attacked (Which can be quite frequent.)
Flare: Flare sucks. Gotten in Eureka. It's nice for a single target Nuke but honestly I think Break 2 is better.
Death: Why use Death when you have Break 2? Obtainable in Eureka and I suppose adds more instant death... but at this point you're preparing for sages and have Toad/Mini as well.
Meteo: It has a cool spell animation for its day. Again, obtainable in Eureka and again, pretty useless. Massive damage to all enemies.
Shiva: Shiva may be a low level summon, but Shiva can do quite a lot of damage to multiple enemies. I'd use her on a Summoner OR a Sage. She's pretty good and she can be used to kill enemies quickly later on. Obtain this power house cheaply at Leprit.
Odin: Defeat him in Salonia. He's a bit like a certain bird boss from earlier, but more damage and more HP. Once you obtain him, he's buyable in Eureka also.
Leviathan: Defeat him in Lake Dol. Very powerful summon but a lot of Level 7 spells are useful making this guy almost obsolete. Once obtained, you can buy him in Eureka.
Bahamut: Defeat him in Cave of Bahamut. Best summon in the game as well as the best spell for doing damage with. This is why Meteo doesn't matter: Bahamut just simply hits everyone hard. Like Odin and Leviathan, he's buyable in Eureka also once you obtain him.
Like in FFII, setting your party up can be quite important. However unlike in FFII, these decisions are made all the time throughout the game and are not chosen at the beginning of the game practically.
Here's how I set up my party for each segment of the game (Note, this is how I sortted my party out for effeciency):
Beginning of the Game to the end of Cave of the Seal
End of Cave of the Seal to Tozas
Tozas through to getting the Ship
From getting the ship to the Fire Crystal
Getting the Fire Crystal all the way through to Goldor's Mansion
Monk/Black Belt (Scholar for the Hyne boss fight)
Knight (Or Viking/Dragoon)
Fargabaad (And Cave of Darkness)
Knight (OR Hunter depending on choice.)
After Cave of Darkness - through to Eureka
White Mage /Shaman/Priest
I hate level grinding. I generally hate grinding in general unless it's Disgaea. However Level Grinding in FFIII is IMPORTANT. It can be played without doing it, but the experiences won't be pleasant.
There are two places I level grind at certain locations. Now I feel I should probably add a third 'level grinding' time which would actually come earlier than that. If you want to level grind before Salamander, go ahead.
Do not go over the top with level grinding though: You want to save some of those levels for your job levels later as well and not waste as much time level grinding.
If you want: You can level up to Level 17 before Salamander. I hear this reduces his difficulty a lot.
1st time: Before going to Salonia, there's a 'swamp area' outside of Salonia. It's an amazing spot to grind. Grind to Base level 26 before proceeding, and Garuda will be a walk in the park.
2nd time: Before going to the World of Darkness. The Cave of Bahamut is an amazing place to Level grind, but you want to wait until you get the Sage and Ninja job classes so you can grind the Sage Job Class to level 26 by the end of the game. Job Level 26 is important as it adds more layers to spells to do more damage or heal more: Such as Cure 4 and Bahamut.
This is the part where I now talk about all the most annoying parts of the game. The parts which everyone dreads about the game.
These are the reasons FFIII is considered one of the hardest FF's in the series. A lot of this was completely toned down in the DS version from what I've seen and for good reason.
Mini Dungeons suck. At least Toad Dungeons allow you to switch back into normal form once you got past the entrance, but the Mini Dungeons will require you to basically stock up on magic and turn into a Black/White Mage. Note: If you turn into one you LOSE all your spell charges also. So rest up and be prepared.
Salamander is not as famous as another up and coming boss that is coming up. However he is known to be one of the hardest bosses because he is far more powerful and hits hard compared to your level if you have not grinded or run away.
This guy can even dodge your Ice Spells (even your Ice 3 spell!) and if I recall correctly is not even weak to Ice despite being the boss of the Fire Cavern AND using Fire attacks. He can almost instant kill all your party except a Knight with Ice Armour. So I hope you didn't sell it.
The Water Cavern
Argh... there's a lot to say about the Water Cavern. I find it to be a bitch of a dungeon to go through since you're still so underlevelled and your spells aren't as effective. You don't have access to decent Lightning Magic either. This dungeon is hell in short and even the boss at the end, Kraken, is slightly annoying. But not at the same level as Salamander thankfully.
There's also no treasure in the Cavern and there's a lot of false paths which lead to nothing but dead ends. The enemies can also cast status magic and this is where I end up using a lot of my Phoenix Downs. Probably one of the nastiest dungeons because you're not given the equipment or Magic to actually prepare for it.
Do NOT go anywhere near Salonia unless you're prepared. Once you do, you cannot leave Salonia until you finished that quest line. In Salonia you can find the almighty Dragon Equipment as well as the weapons needed to defeat...
Yup. Garuda makes the list. Everyone saw this one coming. Garuda is LEGENDARY for being cheap and extremely frustrating. When I first went against Garuda, I messed up a savestate due to talking to one of the most irritating people in the world on Skype. This frustrated me so much and messed my Save so hard I had to RESTART FFIII entirely.
So what is Garuda like? He has only one attack: Thunder. It hurts more than you can heal and you'll die in 2-3 shots. However there are clues to beating him: Being a Dragoon is basically screamed at by the NPCs of Salonia. But this is actually NOT ENOUGH.
Garuda, even with his 'weakness' still hurts. However, being level 26 before fighting him will help a lot. So before you go into Salonia, GRIND TO 26. This will make the mid game that much easier.
Honestly, it's a huge dick move by Square.
I actually like this dungeon as it's a side dungeon and the whole goal is to make you stronger quickly. However the four 'hidden treasures' all contain hidden enemies, including splitting/dividing enemies so... I suppose that should be mentioned.
Cave to the Invincible/Ancient's Cave
I have nothing against the first part of this cave. But the second part is another hell hole to go through. It's full of Dividing/Splitting enemies. Sometimes they just choose to Divide by themselves, and if you hit them they divide. You don't have M. Knight yet so you need your Knight to paralyze them. Another dick move as you're not prepared. At least they warn you about the Cave of Darkness...
Cave of Darkness
So imagine a dungeon full of those enemies I said earlier that split everytime you hit them unless you use a certain technique. Imagine 8-9 floors of this. Imagine that most the dungeon were false walls and secret passage ways. Welcome to the Cave of Darkness.
Now at least they warn you about the enemies before you go through this cave, but honestly that's like only half the story. Less than even. This dungeon is the one dungeon everyone remembers and hates through the game, and there's no secret as to why.
Luckily there are ways around it, but the false walls will drive you crazy. You may not know if you're going the right way or not until you mess up.
Here is a typical map though of the Cave of Darkness, and this is just to obtain ONE bit of equipment:
The only upside to this cave is that the boss is pathetic and doesn't split. Remember to have one at least one spell charge in Exit or Warp
Cave of Bahamut
Useful cave for Grinding levels. Stick to the first floor for this but don't do it until you have Ninja and Sages.
Maze of the Ancients/Crystal Tower/Eureka/World of Darkness + Xande/Echnida/Two Headed Dragon/Arihman/Cloud of Darkness
This is a hell of a trip to get from your airship to the final stretch of the game. This is also pretty much documented as a giant slap across your face and the other reason FFIII is considered so difficult. Also you cannot use the Exit or Warp spells in these dungeons.
Everyone knows about this by now so I don't need to go into detail. Let's just say: Experience this for yourselves.
Beating this version of the game will leave a great feeling of satisifation. It can be frustrating if you don't plan ahead, but hopefully with this guide, it'll help you a lot. I hope this helps a lot. I hope you have as much fun reading this guide and using it as much as I've had fun writing it and hopefully it'll make FFIII FC/NES a lot easier for people.